WASHINGTON, D.C. (WWTI) — The Department of Defense is adapting to recent guidance regarding COVID-19 quarantines and isolations.
On January 6, the Department of Defense Under Secretary released a memorandum for all DoD workplaces regarding new COVID-19 protocols.
According to the DoD, regardless of vaccination status, personnel who test positive for the coronavirus will be required to remain out of the workplace for five calendar days. Personnel will be permitted to return after five days, if they are asymptomatic or symptoms have resolved 24-hours prior.
The DoD will require these individuals to wear a face mask in the workplace for an additional five days, even if masks are not required in a certain space.
Access will be restricted to DoD-controlled workplaces if personnel have signs or symptoms of COVID-19. Those who develop symptoms during the workday will be required to distance themselves from others, wear a face mask if they are not wearing one, and promptly leave the workplace after notifying their commander.
The Department has also altered guidance for an individual defined as a “close contact” to a COVID-19 case. Those who are unvaccinated, or have not received a recommended COVID-19 booster dose when eligible will be required to remain out of the workplace for five days.
Additionally, regardless of vaccination status. asymptomatic personnel with potential exposure, based on close contact, will be mandated to wear a mask in the workplace for ten calendars days from the date of their last contact.
Some exceptions will be made for asymptomatic personnel with potential exposure in cases of mission-essential activities. These individuals will be required to obtain a COVID-19 test on the fifth day following exposure, conduct daily pre-screening with temperature checks, wear a mask in the workplace for ten calendar days after exposure, continue to physically distance and clean and disinfect workspaces daily.
The DoD is continuing to require commanders and supervisors to mandate masks in indoor workspaces, minimize close contact between individuals assign telework if possible and comply with COVID-19 screening testing requirements.